I have been reading this book about my favorite Saint and I really am having a hard time putting it down. It is a compilation of St. John Bosco's biographical memoirs, published by Tan. Don Bosco, founder of the Salesian order, had his first dream when he was nine years old. In this dream, Our Lord called him to teach young boys that virtue is beautiful and sin is ugly. He also promised to give John Bosco His Mother as a guide and helper.
From the back cover:
"In the following 60 years, he experienced remarkable vision-like dreams, which were so lively and vivid that he would often awaken exhausted the next morning...Catholics who may not be inspired by abstract spiritual writings will be able to see in these dreams the evil of impurity, disobedience, gluttony, pride, bad Confessions, sacreligious Communions, etc. as well as the reality of Hell and the danger of flirting with temptations. They also will see the great power of good Confessions and devout Holy Communions, as well as the rewards in store for those who practice purity, obedience, temperance and humility, but especially for those who preserve their baptismal innocence--a precious gem far too little regarded by most Catholics. "
I am also stuck by a letter on education at the end of the book which I have read before but speaks volumes to me today. Don Bosco dreamt that a pupil of his Oratory came to him and described the importance of spending time in recreation with the children. He warned Don Bosco against only preaching to the boys and not spending time playing with them.
"The teacher who is seen only in the classroom, and nowhere else, is a teacher and nothing more; but let him go with his boys to recreation and he becomes a brother."
How many days go by that I keep to my work, preparing meals, lessons and doing household tasks but do not take the time to joyfully play with the children, to get outside and run with them or play games with them? Don Bosco was so good at becoming one of them that they trusted him implicitly and wanted to please him. This will be my goal this week, to spend time each day in recreation with the children.
I'll let you know how it goes.